100 books like Fallen Soldiers

By George L. Mosse,

Here are 100 books that Fallen Soldiers fans have personally recommended if you like Fallen Soldiers. Shepherd is a community of 9,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War

Evie Yoder Miller Author Of Shadows

From my list on the intertwinings of war, conscience, and religion.

Who am I?

The main reason I care about the relationship of war, conscience, and religion is because I believe strongly in the separation of church and state. A country’s methods of pursuing its best interests, include the use of power and warfare. Religions, however, make central: love your neighbor as much as you love yourself. People need to develop a conscience about what principle matters most. In the Civil War, the old tenet, an “eye for an eye,” was used to justify killing others for reasons of advantage or revenge. But I want to be involved instead in creating peace and justice for all.

Evie's book list on the intertwinings of war, conscience, and religion

Evie Yoder Miller Why did Evie love this book?

Death is everywhere in war: on the battlefield, in a disease-ridden hospital, or in childbirth on the home front. Drew Gilpin Faust’s non-fiction book, This Republic of Suffering, brings eye-popping numeric data to the prevalence of death in war. But she never stops at the surface level of how many deaths, or how many unidentified soldiers or improper burials occur during the Civil War. I was caught up entirely as Faust’s words, riveting and respectful of all the pain and loss, showed how death became an ennobling transformation for many people, either in the cause of racial standing or of Union/secessionist preservation.

By Drew Gilpin Faust,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked This Republic of Suffering as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NATIONAL BESTSELLER • NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FINALIST • An "extraordinary ... profoundly moving" history (The New York Times Book Review) of the American Civil War that reveals the ways that death on such a scale changed not only individual lives but the life of the nation.

More than 600,000 soldiers lost their lives in the American Civil War. An equivalent proportion of today's population would be six million. In This Republic of Suffering, Drew Gilpin Faust describes how the survivors managed on a practical level and how a deeply religious culture struggled to reconcile the unprecedented carnage with its belief…


Book cover of War Beyond Words: Languages of Remembrance from the Great War to the Present

Shannon Bontrager Author Of Death at the Edges of Empire: Fallen Soldiers, Cultural Memory, and the Making of an American Nation, 1863-1921

From my list on the memory of the war dead.

Who am I?

I am a professor who holds a Ph.D. in American history. I researched several archives in the United States and Paris, France to write this book and I am very proud of it. I was inspired to write this story mainly from listening to the friends of my parents, when I was younger, who went to war in Vietnam and came back broken yet committed to making the world a better place. The kindness they showed me belied the stories they shared of their harrowing experiences and I wanted to understand how this divergence happened in men that rarely spoke of their past.      

Shannon's book list on the memory of the war dead

Shannon Bontrager Why did Shannon love this book?

Some may disagree with me, but I think this is Winter’s masterpiece. It is a book that charts the ways our remembrance of the war dead changed from the violence of the First World War to the Holocaust to the present. He looks at film, photographs, literature, and war memorials to show how our memories have become less vertical and more horizontal over time and how we have focused less and less on the faces of the dead and more and more on the names of the masses, such as one finds on Maya Lin’s Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C. While all of Winter’s works are fantastic, this is his best.

By Jay Winter,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked War Beyond Words as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What we know of war is always mediated knowledge and feeling. We need lenses to filter out some of its blinding, terrifying light. These lenses are not fixed; they change over time, and Jay Winter's panoramic history of war and memory offers an unprecedented study of transformations in our imaginings of war, from 1914 to the present. He reveals the ways in which different creative arts have framed our meditations on war, from painting and sculpture to photography, film and poetry, and ultimately to silence, as a language of memory in its own right. He shows how these highly mediated…


Book cover of The Political Lives of Dead Bodies: Reburial and Postsocialist Change

Greta Lynn Uehling Author Of Everyday War: The Conflict over Donbas, Ukraine

From my list on the connection between personal relationships.

Who am I?

As a cultural anthropologist, I'm like a cultural detective, exploring the intricate and often heart-wrenching world of war, conflict, and population displacement. But before you envision me in a dusty library, let me share that I found my passion for unraveling the everyday, lived experiences of war while living in Ukraine, where I became close to incredible individuals whose lives had been profoundly altered by war. When people shared with me how Russian aggression was tearing apart their cherished friendships and family bonds, I knew I had to delve into the profound effects of war on personal relationships. So, here I am, on a mission to illuminate the hidden stories, and the untold struggles, that are so important. 

Greta's book list on the connection between personal relationships

Greta Lynn Uehling Why did Greta love this book?

Katherine Verdery was on my PhD dissertation committee and her insights have long influenced my work.

This dry and ironically humorous book shows how corpses and statues do indeed have political “lives,” expanding readers’ awareness of who counts and what matters. The book gave me courage and inspiration to write a chapter about volunteer body collectors in Ukraine in my book. I explore how and why they cared about the human remains that the military had left behind.

In both books, care for the dead is life-affirming and helps establish new kinds of political order.

By Katherine Verdery,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Political Lives of Dead Bodies as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Since 1989, scores of bodies across Eastern Europe have been exhumed and brought to rest in new gravesites. Katherine Verdery investigates why certain corpses-the bodies of revolutionary leaders, heroes, artists, and other luminaries, as well as more humble folk-have taken on a political life in the turbulent times following the end of Communist Party rule, and what roles they play in revising the past and reorienting the present. Enlivening and invigorating the dialogue on postsocialist politics, this imaginative study helps us understand the dynamic and deeply symbolic nature of politics-and how it can breathe new life into old bones.


Book cover of Multidirectional Memory: Remembering the Holocaust in the Age of Decolonization

Shannon Bontrager Author Of Death at the Edges of Empire: Fallen Soldiers, Cultural Memory, and the Making of an American Nation, 1863-1921

From my list on the memory of the war dead.

Who am I?

I am a professor who holds a Ph.D. in American history. I researched several archives in the United States and Paris, France to write this book and I am very proud of it. I was inspired to write this story mainly from listening to the friends of my parents, when I was younger, who went to war in Vietnam and came back broken yet committed to making the world a better place. The kindness they showed me belied the stories they shared of their harrowing experiences and I wanted to understand how this divergence happened in men that rarely spoke of their past.      

Shannon's book list on the memory of the war dead

Shannon Bontrager Why did Shannon love this book?

Rothberg is not a historian but I love what he accomplished with this scholarly book. He examines film, literature, and paintings to suggest that our memories are multidirectional: meaning they often move in different directions at the same time. This allows him to place the holocaust side-by-side the colonial/decolonial project and produce a devastating story of how each fed upon the other. For example, he looks at moments in 1960s Paris that places Jewish survivors of Auschwitz in conversation with Algerian survivors of French concentration camps during the Algerian war to suggest their memories could work together to produce an honest remembrance of the past. I try to do something similar in my own book by illustrating how the war dead could link domestic and foreign places together in building an American Empire.   

By Michael Rothberg,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Multidirectional Memory as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Multidirectional Memory brings together Holocaust studies and postcolonial studies for the first time. Employing a comparative and interdisciplinary approach, the book makes a twofold argument about Holocaust memory in a global age by situating it in the unexpected context of decolonization. On the one hand, it demonstrates how the Holocaust has enabled the articulation of other histories of victimization at the same time that it has been declared "unique" among human-perpetrated horrors. On the other, it uncovers the more surprising and seldom acknowledged fact that public memory of the Holocaust emerged in part thanks to postwar events that seem at…


Book cover of Germans Into Nazis

Benjamin Carter Hett Author Of The Death of Democracy: Hitler's Rise to Power and the Downfall of the Weimar Republic

From my list on the legacy of the First World War.

Who am I?

I was a law school graduate heading for my first job when, unable to think of anything better to do with my last afternoon in London, I wandered through the First World War galleries of the Imperial War Museum. I was hypnotized by a slide show of Great War propaganda posters, stunned by their clever viciousness in getting men to volunteer and wives and girlfriends to pressure them. Increasingly fascinated, I started reading about the war and its aftermath. After several years of this, I quit my job at a law firm and went back to school to become a professor. And here I am.

Benjamin's book list on the legacy of the First World War

Benjamin Carter Hett Why did Benjamin love this book?

Fritzsche shows here how, from 1914 to 1933, middle class Germans were welded into the political block that supported Hitler. Another spellbindingly original book – among other things, Fritzsche shows very persuasively that the Great Depression had little to do with the rise of Hitler – the Nazis’ recipe of egalitarian but nationalist politics was already doing its work before 1929.

By Peter Fritzsche,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Germans Into Nazis as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Why did ordinary Germans vote for Hitler? In this dramatically plotted book, organized around crucial turning points in 1914, 1918, and 1933, Peter Fritzsche explains why the Nazis were so popular and what was behind the political choice made by the German people.

Rejecting the view that Germans voted for the Nazis simply because they hated the Jews, or had been humiliated in World War I, or had been ruined by the Great Depression, Fritzsche makes the controversial argument that Nazism was part of a larger process of democratization and political invigoration that began with the outbreak of World War…


Book cover of The Road Back

Richard Zimler Author Of The Incandescent Threads

From my list on survivors of a horrific trauma.

Who am I?

I’m originally from New York but have lived in Portugal for the last 33 years. I write my novels in English and my children’s books in Portuguese. As anyone who reads my latest novel will discover, I have been greatly influenced the mythology and mystical traditions of various religions, especially Judaism (kabbalah). Happily, I discovered early on that I adore writing about people who have been systematically persecuted and silenced. It gives me a great sense of accomplishment to explore taboo subjects and topics that others would prefer to forget or conceal. When I’m not working on a book, I like to garden and travel. 

Richard's book list on survivors of a horrific trauma

Richard Zimler Why did Richard love this book?

World War I caused 20 million deaths and left 21 million wounded.

Soldiers who survived the gas attacks and trench warfare often returned to societies eager to forget the atrocities of the conflict and move on. Remarque’s insightfully written novel details the struggles of three German soldiers who return home only to discover that they may have no place in a nation that has learned almost nothing from what they regard as a senseless and immoral war.

In May of 1933, this novel and the rest of Remarque's writing were declared “unpatriotic” by the Nazi dictatorship and all his novels were banned.

By Erich Maria Remarque,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Road Back as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

After surviving several horrifying years in the inferno of the Western Front, a young German soldier and his cohorts return home at the end of WW1. Their road back to life in civilian world is made arduous by their bitterness about what they find in post-war society. A captivating story, one of Remarque's best.


Book cover of Haig's Enemy: Crown Prince Rupprecht and Germany's War on the Western Front

Eric Dorn Brose Author Of The Kaiser's Army: The Politics of Military Technology in Germany During the Machine Age, 1870-1918

From my list on the German army in World War One.

Who am I?

I retired from Drexel University in 2015 after thirty-six years as a professor of German and European History of the 19th and 20th Centuries. My sub-specialty in the History of Technology carried over into publications that over the years focused increasingly on the Prussian/German Army (The Politics of Technological Change in Prussia [1993] and The Kaiser’s Army [2001]) and naval conflict (Clash of the Capital Ships [2021]).  

Eric's book list on the German army in World War One

Eric Dorn Brose Why did Eric love this book?

Boff’s book, impressively researched with extensive use of rare primary sources, and winner of two impressive British book awards, examines the war life and times of Bavarian Crown Prince Rupprecht. In high command on the Western Front for the entire war, Rupprecht remained in position to witness the limitations of Prussian generalship, especially in 1914 and 1918; the growing preponderance of allied strength after U.S. entry in 1917; and divisive home front politics throughout Germany. He lost not only the war, but also a son, as well as his throne, which was swept away in the revolutionary upheaval at the war’s end. 

By Jonathan Boff,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Haig's Enemy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

During the First World War, the British Army's most consistent German opponent was Crown Prince Rupprecht of Bavaria. Commanding more than a million men as a General, and then Field Marshal, in the Imperial German Army, he held off the attacks of the British Expeditionary Force under Sir John French and then Sir Douglas Haig for four long years. But Rupprecht was to lose not only the war, but his son and his throne.

Haig's Enemy by Jonathan Boff explores the tragic tale of Rupprecht's war-the story of a man caught under the wheels of modern industrial warfare. Providing a…


Book cover of Friedr & Wim 1916-1927

Michael J. Murphy Author Of Beneath the Willow

From my list on fiction to immerse yourself in a historical narrative.

Who am I?

My passion for historical fiction writing stems from a lifelong interest in history and a love for creating stories that have rich characters, with deep and meaningful personalities. My interest in history led me to study the subject at university, which has worked hand-in-hand with the pleasure I get from writing. Researching stories is another aspect that I enjoy, and it has seen me travel to destinations all over the world, where I have made some wonderful friendships.

Michael's book list on fiction to immerse yourself in a historical narrative

Michael J. Murphy Why did Michael love this book?

Friedr and Wim is a novel that I can highly recommend and one of those gems you find outside of the mainstream.

The story moves from the trenches of World War One to a Germany in the 1920s that is in turmoil: politically, economically, and socially. The author gives the reader a different perspective to the one we might be used to in relation to the time period, by following the lives of two young German men as they move through arguably the most traumatic period in world history.

The author creates a story that is historically accurate, but rich in emotion and drama, while at the same time raising many questions for the reader.

By Teresa van der Kraan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Friedr & Wim 1916-1927 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For those long years on the Western Front, they had known only war. They carried it with them even now, as they marched home with holes in their boots, broken, defeated. The only thing keeping Friedrich upright, placing one foot in front of the other, was his best friend's presence by his side. While Wilhelm still cared for him, still needed him, he could never forget the promise they had made: together, or not at all. Friedrich had never wanted to be a soldier. He had questioned it every time he raised his Mauser on the front line. Now, he…


Book cover of Enduring the Great War: Combat, Morale and Collapse in the German and British Armies

Tim Cook Author Of The Secret History of Soldiers: How Canadians Survived the Great War

From my list on the Great War and why it haunts us.

Who am I?

Tim Cook is the Great War historian at the Canadian War Museum. Since 2002, he has curated the permanent First World War gallery of the CWM, which has been visited by an estimated 8 million people, and he has created many temporary, traveling, and digital exhibitions. He is also the author or editor of 13 books of Canadian military history. For his contributions to the study of Canadian history, he is a member of the Royal Society of Canada and the Order of Canada. He has selected five books that cover the scope of the war, from its origins to the legacy.

Tim's book list on the Great War and why it haunts us

Tim Cook Why did Tim love this book?

Amid the industrial war of fire and fury, a key question remains on how the soldiers survived. Watson’s book explores the experience for British and German soldiers, drawing upon their letters and diaries. Enduring the Great War offers new ways to understand the war of the trenches, how morale was sustained, and it provides an inner portrait into the men who took in the grinding warfare.

By Alexander Watson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Enduring the Great War as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This book is an innovative comparative history of how German and British soldiers endured the horror of the First World War. Unlike existing literature, which emphasises the strength of societies or military institutions, this study argues that at the heart of armies' robustness lay natural human resilience. Drawing widely on contemporary letters and diaries of British and German soldiers, psychiatric reports and official documentation, and interpreting these sources with modern psychological research, this unique account provides fresh insights into the soldiers' fears, motivations and coping mechanisms. It explains why the British outlasted their opponents by examining and comparing the motives…


Book cover of Hitler's First War: Adolf Hitler, the Men of the List Regiment, and the First World War

Benjamin Carter Hett Author Of The Death of Democracy: Hitler's Rise to Power and the Downfall of the Weimar Republic

From my list on the legacy of the First World War.

Who am I?

I was a law school graduate heading for my first job when, unable to think of anything better to do with my last afternoon in London, I wandered through the First World War galleries of the Imperial War Museum. I was hypnotized by a slide show of Great War propaganda posters, stunned by their clever viciousness in getting men to volunteer and wives and girlfriends to pressure them. Increasingly fascinated, I started reading about the war and its aftermath. After several years of this, I quit my job at a law firm and went back to school to become a professor. And here I am.

Benjamin's book list on the legacy of the First World War

Benjamin Carter Hett Why did Benjamin love this book?

Weber is another outstanding and original historian. Here he takes apart all the myths that have accumulated around Hitler’s military service in the First World War, showing that Hitler was a mediocre soldier with a relatively safe job who got medals because the officers knew who he was. Weber also shows how crucial a (legendary) version of Hitler’s war service was to his rise to power.

By Thomas Weber,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hitler's First War as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Hitler claimed that his years as a soldier in the First World War were the most formative years of his life. However, for the six decades since his death in the ruins of Berlin, Hitler's time as a soldier on the Western Front has, remarkably, remained a blank spot. Until now, all that we knew about Hitler's life in these years and the regiment in which he served came from his own account in Mein Kampf and the equally mythical accounts of his comrades.

Hitler's First War for the first time looks at what really happened to Private Hitler and…


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